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    Monday, December 29, 1997

    Holum's first, last Olympics?

     WEST ALLIS, WIS. (AP) -- Speedskater Kirstin Holum is only 17, has broken her American record for 3,000 meters three times this year, made the U.S. Olympic team and is on the brink of international stardom.
     That fame could be fleeting.
     The 1998 Winter Olympics at Nagano, Japan, will be the first and possibly the last for Holum, of Waukesha, Wis.
     After winning the 3,000 Monday at the Pettit National Ice Center, Holum said she probably would quit after this season to pursue her dream of becoming an artist.
     "There's so much more out there than speedskating," said Holum, the daughter of Olympic gold medalist Dianne Holum. "It's too conuming. I don't know what it's like not to skate. I want to get on with (my life)."
     That includes going to art school after graduating in the spring from Milwaukee Pius High School. But the best art schools are in the east, which would mean leaving the U.S. training facility for speedskaters at West Allis.
     "I like painting and drawing and when colleges (looked at my portfolio) they thought I'd be good at illustration," she said. "I want to go to college and have a job and everything else that comes with it."
     That decision is fine with her mother, who also is her coach and who won a gold, two silvers and a bronze at the 1968 and 1972 Olympics.
     "She has a lot of God-given talent that she'd like to explore," her mother said.
     The surprise announcement came after Holum had broken her 1996 track record of 4 minutes, 18.3 seconds, with a time of 4:17.20. Her U.S. record is 4:13.05. She also is the 1997 world junior speedskating champion.
     Holum also could still qualify for the Olympics at 1,500 meters. It ma be her only year at Olympic glory, but her mother understands why her daughter wants more out of life than just skating.
     "When I skated, when Eric Heiden (who won five golds in 1980) skated, you had your trials, your World Championships and you went home," Dianne said. "But that was 100 years ago."
     Holum said her daughter, who "has a real talent in art," has been having trouble finding time just to complete work so she can apply to colleges while gearing up for the Olympics.
     "You've got these two huge goals going on at the same time," she said. " She's had so much to do lately. The rest of them (art students) get to keep working (on their portfolios and applications to different schools)."
     Even though Dianne has always coached Kirstin, and is the U.S. Olympic Committee 1997 development team coach of the year, she won't be allowed to coach her daughter at the games. She won't even be allowed to watch her daughter practice at Nagano, something only allowed for national coaches.
     Dianne said not being able to even see her daughter practice also upsets her as a parent. She said she would be content to sit in the stands.
     But it's something she said they will work out and she doesn't want to create a conroversy.
     "I am not trying to make this a big political issue. I just want to be there to support my daughter," Holum said.
     David Tamburrino of Saratoga Springs, N.Y., won the men's 5,000-meter race in 6:52.28. The 3,000 and 5,000 were held to select the U.S. allround world team and did not count towards Olympic qualification.
     Skaters at those distances make the Olympics based on World Cup competition. Holum, Jennifer Rodriguez of Miami and Catherine Raney of Elm Grove, Wis., have qualified for the 3,000. KC Boutiette of Tacoma, Wash., who did not skate Monday, and Tamburrino have qualified for the 5,000.
     Based on results of the two races and previous competition, the three women who made the allround team, which competes in World Cup events, were Chris Witty of West Allis, Becky Sundstrom of Glen Ellyn, Ill., and Rodriguez. The men's squad includes Boutiette, Tamburrino and Jondon Trevena of Fort Collins, Colo.
     MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Results Monday of the U.S. World Team Allround Speedskating Championships at the Pettit National Ice Center:
     5,000--1, David Tamburrino, Saratoga Springs, N.Y., 6:52.38. 2, Jondon Trevena, Fort Collins, Colo., 7:03.15. 3, Derek Parra, San Bernardino, Cal., 7:04.22. 4, Jason Hedstran, Shoreview, Minn., 7:04.54. 5, Tim Hoffmann, Waukesha, 7:11.70. 6, Matt Vraa, Eagan, Minn., 7:12.34.
     World Allround Team--1, KC Boutiette, Tacoma, Wash., 116.688. 2, Trevena, 118.789. 3, Parra, 119.038.
     3,000--1, Kirstin Holum, Waukesha, Wis., 4:17.20. 2, Jennifer Rodriguez, Miami, 4:18.55. 3, Rebecca Sundstrom, Glen Ellyn, Ill., 4:22.34. 4, Chris Witty, West Allis, 4:26.95. 5, Catherine Raney, Elm Grove, Wis., 4:26.99. 6, Sarah Shapiro, Milwaukee, 4:30.18.
     World Allround Team--1, Witty, 124.281. 2, Sundstrom, 124.933. 3, Rodriguez, 125.171.